2017 Year In Review + 2018 Plans

2017 was an interesting year for me, cosplay-wise. If you didn’t already know, I was somewhat “forced” into hiatus from the hobby in late 2013 after I finished my degree and moved back to Yellowknife. The combination of nothing local to attend, having to travel for events and to see friends, and seasonal depression did nothing to help my motivation, and I was stuck in a rut for a good couple years. When I decided to go back to school and finally escape the North, it served as a launching point for my re-entry into the cosplay.

I started slowly, doing a few builds to get my sewing back up to snuff. In 2016 I managed to win my first costuming award in years for my Y’shtola, which sparked a fire in me for competition. Late in that year I was still adjusting to the move down to Edmonton and getting back into the student life, but once 2017 hit I was ready to dive right back into costume-making. And dive in I did.

Cindy Aurum – Final Fantasy XV

My first project of the year was one of my more, uh, questionable decisions, as I decided to make Cindy here for A Taste of Animethon here in Edmonton–a January convention. Thankfully, we were blessed with warmer than average temperatures that month (thanks, global warming!) so I didn’t completely freeze my butt off. I wound up making every piece of the outfit from scratch, save for the gloves, and I consider the jacket one of my crowning achievements for construction out of everything I sewed this year.

Cindy came out again at Calgary Expo, which somehow was colder than ATOA despite it being in April. Hmph.

Saber Bride (Nero Claudius) – Fate/Grand Order

I actually started this costume in late 2015 alongside my Y’shtola, with the intent of debuting her at Sakura-Con 2016. That didn’t happen. I later planned to enter it into the TwitchCon cosplay contest. Then I moved, so that also didn’t happen. So then, I was like, let’s enter it in the Edmonton Expo 2016 cosplay contest! You… might have already guessed how that went.

This beast of a costume finally made its debut at Calgary Expo 2017 after over a year of off and on work. What a pain in my ass this was. I don’t do bodysuits so that was a huge learning process, then on top of that I had to insert about a billion and one zippers and hand sew a bunch of bridal fabric and… yeah. There’s a lot going on. I had planned to enter it into the Edmonton Expo contest in September, but I ended up boycotting the convention so uh… maybe next year. By then I’ll hopefully have a sword. Maybe.

Rei Ayanami – Neon Genesis Evangelion

HAHA JOKES ON ME I HAVE NO PHOTOS OF THIS COSTUME. But this was literally a one-day build to wear with my friend Carbon Based Cosplay and she has some pics on her page so go check her out. 🙂

Lunafreya Nox Fleuret – Final Fantasy XV

I already have a detailed write-up on how I made Miss Luna here on my site so let me direct you over to that if you want the nitty gritty. Otherwise, hi yes hello I did make two somewhat complicated costumes from the same game this year how are you.

Lunafreya was done as a two-week build for Distant Worlds because I wanted to cosplay something appropriate to wear to an orchestra. I later wore her to a photoshoot, where I met some lovely locals I now call my Final Famtasy, and to Anime Expo, where I stood in a fountain. Somewhere in there I flexed my nonexistent prop skills and made her trident which turned out pretty okay.

Elma – Miss Kobayashi’s Dragon Maid

Behold, the one time I cosplayed from a (then) currently relevant anime! Like Luna, I have a write-up of this costume’s build here. I had hoped to wear Elma to more conventions this year but it didn’t quite work out. Maybe in 2018!

Kanan Matsuura – Love Live! Sunshine!!

The one costume I didn’t fully make this year, I purchased Kanan from CGCos on AliExpress and did some minor alterations for fit. All the accessories were made by me though, and I have the hot glue burns to prove it! Kanan fulfilled two wants for me this year: 1) getting in at least one idol cosplay; and 2) not dying in Los Angeles heat during AX.

Dizzy – Guilty Gear Xrd

You know the drill: Dizzy write-up can be found here. This is also my one competition costume from this year that I entered into Animethon’s contest and managed to get a judge’s award! The product of two weeks of nose to the grindstone work, I consider Dizzy my greatest accomplishment this year. Alas, until I make a smaller pair of travel wings I’m a bit limited in how far I can take her so I’m hoping to get those done to wear her at other conventions in 2018.

Lyse Hext – Final Fantasy XIV

August was the month of back-to-back conventions and costumes for me as I had Animethon and PAX West to prep for. As I’ve apparently made it my goal to make one new FFXIV costume every year since I started playing (2015 – Miqo’te, 2016 – Y’shtola), I decided to fill this year’s quota with the Lady in Red herself from the newest expansion.

I won’t go into too many details on the make of her as I do have a write-up planned, but she turned out not too bad for only having two weeks. One of my goals for 2018 is to fix her up to be a bit sturdier as some of the armor is of questionable durability.

What’s next?

As far as 2018 goes, I’ve only got about the first third to half of the year figured out as my convention plans get a bit fuzzy after I graduate in May. One of my major goals since getting back into the swing of cosplay was to knock things off my long-term plans list so I’m hoping to get a sizable chunk of those done this year. But for now, here are my next three projects:

Aqua – Kingdom Hearts: Birth By Sleep

Aqua has been on my list for literal years. I wound up making her part of my fitness goals, which I hit so… here we are. She’ll be making her debut at A Taste of Animethon at the end of January.

Yugiri Mistwalker – Final Fantasy XIV

2018’s FFXIV costume, apparently. But also probably not the only once since Fan Fest was announced. I really love her Stormblood design and making the Au Ra horns/scales/tail seemed like a good challenge. The plan is to get her done for Kupocon Pomtropolis in April.

Alkaid – .hack//G.U.

BEST GIRL. Okay so, I love .hack a lot and always wanted to revisit the series for cosplay since there are so many good designs. Originally I wanted to do a remake of my Xth form Haseo from years long past, but figured starting with Alkaid would be a better idea as she’s, uh, considerably simpler. The G.U. remake was also a huge motivator, so I guess 2018 is the year of .hack. She’s scheduled in as the May/June build so Anime Expo is the likely debut for her.

As mentioned, convention plans are… still kind of up in the air. A lot of it depends on my availability due to work as I’ll be graduating and hopefully employed by the time con season proper rolls around. I’ll definitely be at as many local events as I can, and Anime Expo is looking likely again. Once I have a better idea of 2018 in general I’ll make another post, but for now, keeping an eye on my planned events page is your best bet on knowing where I’ll be.

Also! I’ve been tossing around the idea of opening a Patreon (yeah yeah, I know) the past few months and I think I’m finally at the point where I can say it’s happening for sure. It’ll just be a matter of figuring out when to launch, but I’ll probably do a soft launch sometime in the next month or so to test the waters, then launch fully once I’m done school. Don’t worry, I won’t be locking any learning resources or content I would post here behind a paywall; it’ll be more for early previews of free content, printable patterns, and hi-res photos. Everything else will be the same as usual, with the majority of my content posted either here or Twitter.

This was fun to write! I’ll, uh, try to be more consistent with the posts in the new year (resolution? sure) but school and sports will probably mess with that as usual. My Lyse write-up is next so I can finally get all of the 2017 costumes over and done with, and then after that will depend on what I feel like writing I guess. Another tutorial? Something more article/editorial-y? Let me know what you guys want to see!

— (。ゝω・。)ゞ

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